Sunday, February 22, 2015

Graveyard-Based MTG Decks

Magic has always had ways to use a graveyard to your advantage.  These are the decks that my brother and I have made over the years specifically for that purpose.  Some of these decks may have been mentioned in previous posts.

60 Card Format
Black, Blue

Animate Dead
Dance of the Dead
Crystal Chimes

Nevynraals Disk

Rhystic Study
Dark Ritual
Hidden Horrow
Feldon's Cane

Bringer of the Blue Dawn
Dralnu's Pet
Avatar of Woe

Assorted big creatures

Reanimation is a solid deck concept, but the nuts and bolts are all old cards.  Animate Dead (3rd/4th Edition), Dance of the Dead (Ice Age), and Necromancy (Visions) made the deck work.  Draw and discard spells changed over the years, as well as the choice of big creatures, but the base concept kept one of our longest-running decks going for over a decade.

60 Card Format
Green, White

4 Anvil of Bogarden
4 Mesmeric Orb

2 Harrow
2 Eternal Dragon
4 Werebear

4 Mystic Enforcer
3 Qasali Pridemage
4 Gurzigost

4 Bonehoard
4 Unburial Rites
4 Pulsemage Advocate


4 Riftstone Portal
2 Nantuko Monastery

WIN METHOD: Damage- Creatures, Mill
INHERENT WEAKNESSES: The deck may become a target by virtue of annoyance before taking off.


Originally this deck was built around one idea: what if I cast Traumatize on myself? Threshold, flashback, madness, hellbent, and other seldom-used mechanics become useful. While blue originally contributed the bulk of the deck, spells were replaced with better spells until the deck was cut to straight green and white.  This deck went through many iterations and card search terms, and is one of my favorite deck collaborations.

Nether Shadow
60 Card Format

Nether Shadow
Ashen Ghoul
Nether Traitor

Buried Alive
Iname, Death Aspect

Braids, Cabal Minion
Magus of the Abyss
Killing Wave
Barter in Blood

Blood Artist
Angel's Tomb
Demonic Tomb
Blood Funnel


Crypt of Agadeem

WIN METHOD: Damage- Creatures
INHERENT WEAKNESSES: Non-creature decks


This is another tried-and-true format, where you generally win by attrition.  We didn't come up with it, we just wanted to try it out.  A rather comprehensive go-to for this deck type can be found at:  .

Other Stuff

As I mentioned, using some combination of synergistic mechanics like madness, delve, hellbent, and threshold has been something I've looked into many times over the years.  While the new delve cards haven't impressed me, I was moved to look into yet another graveyard-centered deck, using a lot of cards I've liked for a while.  Graveyard Deck Number Four!

Red Black Delve Discard Threshold
60-Card Format
Red, Black

4 Avatar of Discord
2 Craggenwick Cremator

4 Demigod of Revenge
4 Vengeful Pharaoh

4 Tombstalker

4 Typhoid Rats

4 Anvil of Bogarden
4 Howling Mine

4 Dark Ritual
4 Rite of Flame
4 Cabal Ritual


Multicolor lands
2 Lotus Vale
2 Gemstone Mine

I haven't played it yet, so it may need to be tweaked to get the right balance of discard and speed.  While Tombstalker is the only delve in the deck, and Cabal Ritual is the only threshold card, Rite of Flame, Vengeful Pharaoh, and Demigod of Revenge are all beneficial in the graveyard.  It looks ok to me, we'll see how it goes.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Morrowind Review

I'll keep this short.  I first played Morrowind years after its release, and didn't particularly care for it.

Reason 1: It has all the game-ending glitches of titles that came after.  I played this for about 8 hours, then hit a bug that reduced my strength to zero.  I couldn't deal damage, or carry anything.  I took some potions to counter this, and then tried to sleep it off.

Reason 2:  Less saves.  While Morrowind does have some auto saving, it is less than in games that followed.  In my case, I was stuck with zero strength because sleep resets the autosave.

Reason 3:  Morrowind does not have map/compass waypoints.  It does provide text clues for where to go, but as I don't read so well, this was really a huge downside.

so, there you have it.  Nostalgic fans love Morrowind; I think it's not worth it.  At this point, with all of the Skyrim DLC, Fallout 3, and so on, I would personally recommend something more current off the Bethesda menu.